Sophie Aldred thought that she would only be back in Doctor Who for a few scenes as Ace — but obviously, she was wrong!
Aldred, who returned for Jodie Whittaker’s swansong episode as the Thirteenth Doctor, The Power of the Doctor, recalled:
“I went down to Cardiff for a costume fitting with Ray Holman, and I said, ‘Yeah, but I’ll only be in a couple of scenes.’ And Ray said, ‘Not from the script I’ve read…’
“For my first scene, I was in Bristol, filming in a museum, and I’d been sort of hurried in with a golf umbrella over me. And as I walked on set, the first [Assistant Director] said, ‘Welcome back, Sophie Aldred!’ And everyone burst into applause. And I was going, ‘Oh, no pressure…’ But Jamie [Magnus Stone, director] was there, and he’s just absolutely brilliant, and everyone was so nice and lovely. And it came back, you know… I suddenly remembered how much I adore the process of filming.”
It’s lovely to hear that she received such a warm welcome on set — but then, it’s Sophie Aldred! Of course she received a well-deserved round of applause!
Ace was quite a driving force in The Power of the Doctor, alongside fellow returning companion, Tegan Jovanka (played by Janet Fielding), and the episode even included cameos from Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor with numerous other Doctors.
Plus, we even saw Ace in her iconic jacket once more. Sophie still has the original, taken with the permission of 1980s producer, John Nathan-Turner, so she wore it again in the special, which aired in October 2022 as part of the BBC’s 100th anniversary celebrations.